A soundtrack for the greatest love story

Photo of the song Enchanted by Taylor Swift playing on a phone
Caroline Lobel/Staff

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In the pursuit of a great love story, every main character knows how crucial it is to maintain the perfect playlist — a blend of soft ballads and melancholic voices will serve to commemorate fleet flirtations as you pore over them deep into the night. 

Regardless of what point you’re at in this amorous affair, a good playlist will ensure you’re prepared for whichever stage comes next. After all, If they’re going to be worth your inevitable tears and frustrations, your romance is worth a killer soundtrack too. 

Meeting: “Enchanted” by Taylor Swift

The first moment when you see them across the room, a lukewarm beer in their hands; you know it’s the beginning of the end and you’re already enchanted. Every love story worth remembering starts with a meet-cute, and even though you know the months lying ahead are going to leave scars you’re not sure you’ll survive, those thoughts become irrelevant the first time your eyes meet.

Yearning: “Dandelions” by Ruth B.

Falling in love comes with its own set of disadvantages. The anxieties of feelings unreturned and the overwhelming loneliness of your yearning will leave you wondering if it’s even worth surviving at all. Allow Ruth B.’s soft crooning to lull you to sleep as thoughts of soulful eyes and warm palms permeate your midnight dreams. 

Finally: “Honey” by Kehlani

After weeks of wondering and obsessing over the object of your affections, it finally happens under the watchful gaze of pale moonlight. They’re yours. And if that wasn’t satisfying enough, the feeling of their hands caressing your body will surely remind you that finally your love story has really begun and it is honey-sweet. 

Honeymoon: “Lucky” by Jason Mraz (feat. Colbie Caillat)

There’s nothing more gratifying than finding yourself in the safe embrace of your lover. The world outside your bedroom can be cruel and daunting, but stretched out beside them, those worries are of no concern to you. You bump noses and share iced coffees and you’re certain that no one has ever understood you more. How did you ever get so lucky? 

Fighting: “Up in the Clouds” by Skegss

Every love story has its ups and downs, but that doesn’t make $them hurt any less. Days of fighting have left you exhausted and appeals on both sides have seemed to lose their effect. When the accusations and tears hit their peak, you begin to wonder if you ever really knew them at all. 

Breakup: “Bloom” by The Paper Kites

When the time comes for the unforeseen parting of ways, you can feel yourself retreat into the dark confines of your mind. Every enchanting memory scars like a dagger and as you walk around familiar cobblestone streets, you can see hints of them on every corner. You know it’s wrong; you said your goodbyes for a reason. But still, the temptation to arrive at their doorstep with ingratiating words and teary eyes is almost too much to resist. The loneliness has returned and what’s worse, you’ve seemed to have forgotten how you ever endured it in the first place.

Moving on: “Gravity” by Sara Bareilles

Months have passed since you’ve last seen them. You’ve learned how to survive the rising sun without their sleepy embrace, and in moments when your joy emerges in peals of laughter, you think life without them isn’t so bad. It’s in the darkness of the night that your resolve threatens to break. You wonder if they’re OK and if they’re missing you too, and when you first see them again, their pull is just as alluring as ever. You pause and think about saying hello when they suddenly stop to breathe in the spring air with a soft smile on their face. You avert your gaze and brush past them without a word.

Samantha Lim is the special issues editor. Contact her at [email protected]